UNHCR clears path for Pakistan to deport undocumented Afghan refugees

Published: December 23, 2014
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Minister for SAFRON Lt Gen (Rtd) Abdul Qadir Baloch in ameeting with UNHCR ) Representative Yoshimi Saits. PHOTO: PID

Minister for SAFRON Lt Gen (Rtd) Abdul Qadir Baloch in ameeting with UNHCR ) Representative Yoshimi Saits. PHOTO: PID

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan government can take any decision it deems appropriate for dealing with undocumented Afghan refugees, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) representative Yoshimi Saits said on Monday, clearing a path for the government to deport them.

Clarifying that UNHCR is only responsible for registered Afghan refugees bearing Proof of Registration (PoR) cards, Saits said undocumented refugees are not the responsibility of the agency.

During a meeting with Minister for SAFRON Lt Gen (Rtd) Abdul Qadir Baloch in Islamabad on Monday, Saits said that UNHCR was mandated to protect registered registered refugees. But, he added, Pakistan can take appropriate decisions regarding unregistered, undocumented refugees in view of its national interest.

Saits informed the minister that the agency is considering enhancing repatriation grant for refugees, which is currently set at $200 per head.

Lt Gen Baloch apprised the UNHCR representative regarding the situation of Afghan refugees and related tolerance threshold of the local host communities as well as pressure being exerted by the provincial government.

The minister emphasised on the need for creating pull factors and conducive environment for early repatriation of refugees.

He also directed the secretary SAFRON and Chief Commissioner Afghan Refugees to visit UNHCR headquarters in Geneva to apprise the UNHCR high commissioner about the Afghan refugees issue and recent developments.

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Reader Comments (7)

  • Pakistani
    Dec 23, 2014 - 12:24AM

    The biggest impediment to deportation of illegal aliens in Pakistan is corruption.

    Until the government officials who unlawfully issued Pak ID cards and passports to Afghans and Bengalis are dealt with, this initiative is unlikely to succeed

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  • Sarfaraz
    Dec 23, 2014 - 12:48AM

    Good decision. Also send one million Afghans from Sindh province (do us a favor). Send all Afghans back to Afghanistan. They came to Pakistan when situation was grave there; but now Afghanistan is under democratic system. Let Pakistan take care of own nation.

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  • ThanksGoodness
    Dec 23, 2014 - 2:21AM

    In the wake of Ruthless bloodshed by TTP and mass migration by locals to Pak Metropolis for food & shelter in millions. It’s proper to keep only registered immigrants. It’s already very difficult to trace and find terrorists among illegal immigrants from all sorts.

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  • peace
    Dec 23, 2014 - 2:22AM

    Yes. Deport all afghani and other refugees, legal or not legal. These are more criminals rather refugees.
    Cheers

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  • Roosi
    Dec 23, 2014 - 7:20AM

    With such a porous border, they’ll come right back here after deportation. Pakistan needs to erect a proper border fence to stop this illegal movement to and fro.

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  • FUF
    Dec 23, 2014 - 9:03AM

    registered or not, we want them all out of our country…

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  • MillionSentry
    Dec 24, 2014 - 9:41PM

    @Roosi: Seeing the rugged mountainous terrain and Afgh relatives crossing for shopping, festivals, marriages parties etc. Don’t forget you need a Chitral or Muree like road running up along next to the hundreds of miles of border to track the fence, plus back & forth of thousands of Sentry Men to the mountain top, their ration & tents & fuel too! That’s a lot of Ponies, lol! One little opening in wall or fence and billions of dollars worth of work is useless.

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